One of the best parts of having a home you love is sharing it with others. From game nights and dinners to movie screenings and backyard barbecues, making memories with the people who matter most creates a home.

Below, the IDG team reveals their top tips for designing a home perfect for entertaining. Discover how to maximize your space from foundation to fit out with these ideas.

Inviting island seating at One Canal Point.

Focus on Flow

Creating a perfect entertaining space starts with the right floor plan. If you want a home ideal for hosting, you probably want to avoid closed-off areas or boxy rooms. 

“It doesn’t matter how great the people, food or drinks are if you can’t get to them easily,” IDG interior designer Rhon Royer says.

It’s the reason open-plan living and kitchen areas are so popular. In fact, one of the places where people tend to congregate most is in the kitchen.  

“If I know a client loves to entertain, I always suggest a large center island in the kitchen, allowing us to create an area for guests to sit while the host prepares food or pours wine,” Rhon explains. “It’s also important to leave enough room around the island for people to walk and pass each other comfortably, and that goes for any room in your home. Otherwise, they’ll feel less inclined to talk to others or make the most of the space. So, don’t crowd your furniture to the point where it impedes flow. It’s the silent difference that makes for successful entertaining.”

Custom-designed details outside at Seafire Residences.

Consider Outside

Events often utilize outside space, so when thinking about the flow of your home, don’t forget your garden, patio, or balcony in that equation. The movement between these spaces should feel easy and natural.

“Your guests should be able to move comfortably from sunset drinks outside to their seats in the dining room, creating an atmosphere where everyone can truly relax, unwind and enjoy themselves,” IDG interior designer Barry Hutchinson says.

“As designers, we’re always considering continuity. Many of our clients want indoor/outdoor living, so we often think about how we can make these spaces work together. For example, a large sliding door can be a great solution for merging these zones, and using similar tones or materials can also help create a seamless blend.”

Warm lighting lifts this Beachcomber penthouse.

Choose Lighting Carefully 

Proper lighting is essential to creating a space perfect for entertaining, as harsh, bright lights have the power to make guests uncomfortable and detract from the mood. That’s why we recommend selecting bulbs that come in natural colors. Warmer tones can be lovely at night, but you don’t want anything too cool or sterile.

“If I had friends over, there would be candles burning and a chandelier to give off a soft glow, bathing everything in warm, shadowy light,” IDG personal shopper Paula Duffy says. “Lighting is your chance to have fun and express your personality. A backlit bar or bold light fixture can completely change the feel of a space. In the design world, lighting is often referred to as the jewelry of the room, so think about how you can best use it to accentuate your space.”

Where and how you entertain will influence color choices.

Develop a Color Palette

When nailing down a color palette, it can be helpful to think backwards. Start by considering the rooms you entertain in most and how you use them. For example, if your dining room is exclusively for formal gatherings, you might go bold and playful, whereas if you eat there every day, you’ll want to keep it timeless and simple. 

Feature walls also work well to add a pop of color to entertaining spaces, or you could also invest in something like textured wallpaper. Don’t be afraid to pick up a color wheel to help plan your space. Often, colors directly next to each other on the wheel give off a calming, cohesive feel, while complementary colors (like blue and orange or yellow and purple) can be fantastic for something more daring. 

“At the end of the day, it’s important to choose colors that make you smile,” IDG sales associate Tagh Wilson says. “For me, I believe every room needs a touch of gold, whether that’s a part of the finishes, lighting or soft furnishings. Don’t be scared of things like metallics or bright colors. When used correctly, they can work anywhere, including formal and informal spaces.”

High-quality furnishings in Cypress Pointe.

Don’t Sacrifice Comfort

Ensuring our guests feel comfortable is a huge part of entertaining. Plush sectional lounges or supportive dining chairs will help keep the conversation flowing all night long. 

“If you have a lot of garden get-togethers, it’s also worth investing in high-quality patio furniture that feels just as comfortable as what you have indoors,” Paula says. 

When it comes to decor, being purposeful is the key.

Decorate with Purpose

Now that you’ve figured out your floor plan, lighting, color scheme and furniture, it’s time to accessorize. Decor can bring a space to life, but too much can lead to clutter, so be purposeful about the pieces you choose.

To avoid being heavy-handed, we recommend choosing functional pieces. For example, a dining room can be elevated by a beautiful bar cart, and a luxurious game board can help add a bit of fun and flair to your coffee table. When something looks great and serves a purpose, it’s a win-win. 

Entertain your dreams with our award-winning team.

Get an Extra Pair of Eyes

To create a true entertainer’s home, a consultation with a design team can help take your space to the next level. At IDG, our experienced designers and shoppers have the knowledge and experience to create something customized to your lifestyle. Read more about IDG’s services or book a complimentary consultation today. 

This statement-making chandelier will be the star of any room.


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This high-quality concrete coffee table is perfect for outdoor entertaining.


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Set the mood for your event with this evocative scent, ideal for island gatherings. 


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This Art Deco bar cart is elegant and easily movable to wherever you host. 


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Entertain guests with this glamorous take on an old-fashioned game of tic-tac-toe.


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Linger longer in these ultra-comfortable linen dining chairs. 


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